Wesleyan University

#201 / #69
Global Influence / U.S. Influence
Most Desirable School
Private liberal arts college in Middletown, Connecticut

Wesleyan University Featured Rankings

About Wesleyan University

Featured Alumnus

John Levi Martin ranks among our Top Influential Sociologists Today.

By James Barham, PhD

Wesleyan University was founded in 1831 under the auspices of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In 1872, Wesleyan led the way in admitting female students, an effort sometimes referred to as the “Wesleyan Experiment.” However, resistance to the experiment in certain quarters made itself increasingly felt, until the policy was reversed in 1912. Women were not admitted again until 1970.

In 1937, the university became officially independent from the Methodist Episcopal Church.

Today, Wesleyan is a fully secular, private research university. It comprises 46 undergraduate academic departments which offer more than 900 courses each semester. In addition, the university has 11 graduate-level departmental programs. Among its innovative programs we may mention the College of East Asian Studies, the College of the Environment, the College of Film and the Moving Image, and the College of Integrative Studies.

Wesleyan also has a highly respected world music program, covering West African, Caribbean, African-American, South Asian (classical Indian), Southeast Asian (classical Indonesian), and East Asian (classical Chinese, Japanese, and Korean) traditions, in addition to the traditional European classical music traditions, including contemporary and experimental music.

Wesleyan University is associated with four Nobel Prize laureates, namely,

  • Novelist, V.S. Naipaul for literature
  • Chemist, Satoshi Omura for physiology or medicine
  • Economist, Gary Yohe for peace
  • 28th US President, Woodrow Wilson for peace

In addition, in the early 1960s, towards the end of his life, the great Anglo-American poet, T.S. Eliot, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1948, worked as an editor for Wesleyan University Press.

Other prominent Wesleyan-associated individuals include the following:

  • Mathematicians, Edward Burr Van Vleck, Sanford L. Segal & Jennifer Tour Chayes
  • Computer scientist, Leslie Greengard
  • Philosophers, Robert Stalnaker & Daniel Dennett
  • Poets, Richard Wilbur, Donald Hall & Mark Strand
  • Non-fiction authors, Mary Roach, Sebastian Junger & Ariel Levy
  • Literary scholar, Seth Lerer
  • Actors, Alice Nunn, Bradley Whitford, Laura Fraser, Sarah Schaub & William Garson
  • Comedian, Vladimir Caamaño
  • Film director and producer, Michael Bay
  • Film director, producer, and screenwriter, Joss Whedon
  • Film and TV screenwriter, Mike White
  • TV screenwriter and producer, Matthew Weiner
  • Popular musicians, Amanda Palmer, Santigold (Santi White), Andrew VanWyngarden & Ben Goldwasser
  • Jazz saxophonist and composer, Steve Lehman
  • Operatic composer, lyricist, and playwright, Lin-Manuel Miranda
  • Musicologist and classical composer, Neely Bruce
  • Gamelan virtuoso, Sumarsam
  • Experimental classical composer, John Cage
  • Physicist, Edward Bennett Rosa
  • Statistical physicist, H. Eugene Stanley
  • Geologists, William North Rice, Alexander Winchell & Gordon P. Eaton
  • Chemist, Wilbur Olin Atwater
  • Biochemist, Charles Brenner
  • Botanist, Albert Francis Blakeslee
  • Zoologist, Aaron Louis Treadwell
  • Neuroscientist, Michael Greenberg
  • Psychologists, Elliot Aronson, David McClelland & Beverly Daniel Tatum
  • Psychotherapists, Allan Hobson & Amy Bloom
  • Sociologist, Juliet B. Schor
  • Historians, Nicholas Dirks & Kate Cooper
  • Historians of science, Charles C. Gillispie & Gerald Holton
  • American studies scholar, John Stauffer
  • African American studies scholar, Saidiya Hartman
  • Economists, Steven M. Sheffrin, Kenneth D. West & Gary Loveman
  • Economist and political scientist, Charles Tiebout
  • Political scientist, Adam Berinski
  • Legal scholars, Naomi Mezey & Gabriel J. Chin
  • Radio personality, Angela Yee
  • TV journalist and political commentator, John Yang
  • Online newspaper publisher, Robert Allbritton
  • Former Colorado Governor, John Hickenlooper
  • Current US Senator, Michael Bennett

According to Wikipedia, Wesleyan University is a private liberal arts university in Middletown, Connecticut. Founded in 1831 as a men's college under the auspices of the Methodist Episcopal Church and with the support of prominent residents of Middletown, the college was the first institution of higher education to be named after John Wesley, the founder of Methodism. It is now a secular institution.

Wesleyan University's Online Degrees

Wesleyan University Admissions, Retention, and Graduation Information

Annual ApplicationsAcceptanceGraduation Rate

How Much Does Wesleyan University Cost To Attend?

Tuition (in-state)
Price by Family Income
IncomeAverage Net Cost
0 - 30K$3,967
30K - 48K$7,740
48K - 75K$12,629
75K - 110K$19,821

Source: National Center for Education Statistics

How Much Do Wesleyan University Graduates Make?

If you graduate from Wesleyan University, then you can expect to earn an average of $63,400 per year. You also have a 92% chance of being employed after 10 years.

Wesleyan University's Demographics

Demographic data is for full-time, on-campus students.

Student BodyUnder-GradsGraduates

Where is Wesleyan University?

Wesleyan University is located at 45 Wyllys Avenue, Middletown CT 06459

How Safe is Wesleyan University?

Middletown has a violent crime rate of less than .01% and a property crime rate of less than .01%.

What Is Wesleyan University Known For?

Wesleyan University is known for it's academic work in the following disciplines:

Wesleyan University's Top Areas of Influence With Degrees Offered

Who Are Wesleyan University's Most Influential Alumni?

Wesleyan University's most influential alumni faculty include professors and professionals in the fields of Psychology, Philosophy, and Literature. Here are some of Wesleyan University's most famous alumni:

Daniel Dennett
Daniel Dennett
An American philosopher.
Edward Thorndike
Edward Thorndike
An American psychologist.
Joss Whedon
Joss Whedon
An American director, writer, and producer.
David McClelland
David McClelland
An American psychological theorist.
John Perry Barlow
John Perry Barlow
An American poet and essayist.
Ram Dass
Ram Dass
An American contemporary spiritual teacher and the author of the 1971 book Be Here Now.
Adolf Grünbaum
A German philosopher.
Henry Seely White
Henry Seely White
An American mathematician.
Robert Stalnaker
An American philosopher.
H. Eugene Stanley
An American physicist.
Elliot Aronson
Elliot Aronson
An American psychologist.
Robert Ludlum
Robert Ludlum
An American novelist .

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